Skip to main content

Church was awesome

Kelly plotted our course to the LDS chapel in Jhubei, which is kind of a sister city of Hsinchu. We were wondering how we'd like attending the local Chinese speaking ward and had planned to take the big trek to Taipei's English speaking ward next Sunday. We were wondering if we'd notice the chapel when we came upon it, hoping to not miss it, then as we went a bit farther, there it was! I was so happy to see the beautiful, clean LDS structure and we drove right up through the open gate surrounding the church property and were able to park in the parking garage right under the building next to all the scooters. It was like spotting a piece of heaven on earth when we saw it, then we all walked in and were greeted with smiles and friendly missionaries.Lindsey and I attended the English speaking Relief Society class and Kelly and Christopher attended priesthood meeting, each sat next to an American missionary who translated for them. Then Kelly, Lindsey, and I were together in the small English speaking Sunday School class.

We went up to the third floor for the final hour for Sacrament meeting, and were given headsets to use. As soon as the meeting began, Bishop Wu, who doesn't speak a word of English, welcomed us and told the congregation that our family will be living here for a year, and asked us all to stand briefly so everyone could see us. Luckily the headsets worked and we heard our cue. Christopher had been asked to help pass the sacrament, and didn't have his headset on yet, so he didn't realize it. The bishop was looking at him, and a lady nearby whispered, "Christopher, you're supposed to stand up," so he looked back at us and saw that we were and stood and smiled too.

After the sacrament was blessed and passed, the bishop said he wanted to begin by having our family come up and introduce ourselves. What? Did I hear that correctly? I about died, but thought, "Here we go. Let's do this." We all walked up to the stand and I was completely overcome with fear and emotion. This unexpected request for an introduction caught me completely off guard, yet at the same time, really made me feel welcome. I was the first to speak and tried to gather myself together, and there was a long pause. I had felt the Spirit so strongly throughout the morning, and over and over, got the impression that we should definitely stay in this ward and not even bother going to the English speaking ward in Taipei. And there I was, facing our new congregation, their warm friendly faces staring up at me, awaiting my introduction. An elder stood next to me with a microphone in his hand to translate. It was kind of awkward. I would say a sentence, then pause for him to repeat it in Chinese. I shared with them how grateful I was to be there, to know that no matter where we go in the world, our church will always be there, and it was a great source of strength. I don't even know what all I said, but do know that I shared my love of our Savior, and my love for The Book of Mormon, and that I looked forward to getting to know them.

Kelly followed and did a great job, adding a couple of Chinese phrases, which they seemed to be delighted to hear. Lindsey, who was cheerful and pleasant went next, and told them she'd be leaving soon, but will be back after her first two semesters of college. Christopher wrapped it up with his charming, enthusiastic disposition, and said he loved being here in Taiwan and genuinely expressed his appreciation for this opportunity. There were two good talks following our introduction. The air conditioning went out and it was extremely hot. The second speaker said he wanted our family to know that it's not normally that hot, and that we could plan to show up in our Sunday best clothes in the future and hopefully the air conditioner would be fixed. They ended up opening the windows and a breeze cooled down the third floor chapel somewhat.

I can hardly believe the change of heart that I had over attending a Chinese speaking ward. Initially, I was completely against the idea and thought it would be better to be able to make the trek to Taipei every week, but from the moment we arrived, and throughout the morning, I kept having a strong urge that this was where we are supposed to be. It hit me so hard, when previously, all along, I had every intention to go to the Taipei ward the next Sunday. The translator did a remarkable job, and her soft-spoken Chinese accent conveyed the messages beautifully throughout the meeting. I was very grateful for her gift to be able to provide this to us. It really felt like home and I can hardly wait to go to church next Sunday. The feeling was unanimous in our family. It really is good to be a Mormon when it comes to moving or relocating to a new place because our church is just one big church, and where ever we go, we have instant friends and a ward family. It's quite a blessing.


Heidi said…
So incredibly true. Thanks for sharing this Kelly!
Shana said…
My favorite post yet! So happy you had such a good day!
Lisa said…
What a great experience - and the pictures are wonderful!
Bobbi said…
What a great experience, Kelly! As we have moved several times, including to a foreign country, we have found the same thing--such a great blessing to find church. There we find instant friends, semi-family, and the Spirit. It sounds like you found "home" at that ward. I'm excited to read about all your experiences to come.
Happy Anniversary!

Popular posts from this blog

Fun with Ninnies and Nini

Our family got to attend the monthly stake temple day at the Taipei temple on Saturday.   Lindsey and Christopher did their temple work, then waited outside on the beautiful grounds and at the chapel next door until we were finished with our session. After that, we enjoyed hamburgers at a place we heard about called California Grill, then did some exploring.
Lindsey arrived last week from Rexburg, completing 32 credit hours and her first year of college at Brigham Young University-Idaho. We are so glad to have her home with us!  She will be with us until she starts school again in September and will be taking two classes online in the meantime.  In addition to Lindsey's arrival, we've been blessed to have the company of 7-year-old Nini (her real name is Yeh Min-Yu) with us this week.  She's so darling and we love having her around too.  It's kind of funny that when Lindsey was a little toddler and she could not say her name well, she called herself Ninnies.  So we h…

Book of Mormon Stories Pool Party!

Hopefully this title, Book of Mormon Stories Pool Party, does not sound irreverent, because as an Activity Days leader, I felt compelled to come up with a fun end-of-the-summer event that is also uplifting, and after all, who doesn't love a splash in the pool on a hot day in August?  My current church calling, or official role that I volunteer for, allows me to plan two activities each month for girls ages 8 to 11, that will encourage them to learn and live the gospel, serve others, and use the talents Heavenly Father has given them, to learn to do many good things.  This year's seminary course of study for high school students is The Book of Mormon, and since I am a huge fan of this inspired book of scripture, I came up with this idea to have each girl show up to my house with a written summary of one of her favorite stories from within its many pages, and share it with the rest of the girls, while outside in our swimsuits near our backyard swimming pool!  As each girl shares…

Class of 2030 first day of school

First day of kindergarten was a huge hit!
The only thing that went wrong, other than arriving to school a few hours late due to our flight from Denver and no sleep the night before from seeing the 2017 American solar eclipse in Casper, Wyoming, was losing two small, black buttons from his brand new blue and gray plaid Hurley shirt.
My little boy started kindergarten and I'm so excited for the freedom it will give me while he's away at school, but especially I'm glad for the fun times he will have in learning and being with new friends.  He was so ready and excited!  I didn't know any of the kindergarten teachers at the school, but after meeting Mrs. C, I'm so glad we got her!  Her body language and introduction to Isaac were so sweet and made him feel safe, loved and welcome.
I ordered this fun and festive balloon from ATXBubbles and they delivered it to our front door.  Isaac loved his after school surprise.
He picked out this backpack because the inside says &quo…